Ending violence cycle

JOINING FORCES: Women’s Health Grampians chief executive officer Marianne Hendron is leading a campaign to end violence against women in the Grampians.
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More than 25 Grampians organisations are set to join forces in a landmark campaign aimed at ending violence against women and children.

The new initiative called “Communities of Respect and Equality” is a Grampians prevention strategy aimed at raising awareness about violence against women and its key driver, gender inequality.

Rural and regional communities continued to overrepresented withBallarat’srate of family violence50 per cent higher than the Victorian average.

Women’s Health Grampians chief executive officer Marianne Hendron said all violence against women and children was unacceptable and preventable.

“It has been uplifting to meet with and hear from senior leaders of organisations across the Grampians region who believe by working together we can create communities of respect and equality where everybody has the right to be safe,” Ms Hendron said.

Former Victoria Police assistant commissioner Doctor Leigh Gassner hasbacked the initiative.

DoctorGassner consulted the Australian Human Rights Commission on violence against women and will be a guest speaker at the launch of the project next on later this month.

“Mobilising the community, in building equality and respect is key to preventing violence against women and children,” Doctor Gassner said.

“Violence against women is a community issue and we must all work towards creating safety.”

He leadership from the organisations in developing a holistic prevention plan was a significant step forward.

“Organisations who commit to the strategy will be working in practical ways to prevent violence and address gender inequality.”

But Ms Hendron said the initiative would not be a “one size fits all approach” with each program specially designed each organisation taking part.

“They will consider their size, location, capacity and resources,” Ms Hendon said.

“Importantly, they will be supported by Women’s Health Grampians with expert advice, workplace training, leadership briefings and change management assistance.”

Victorian Minister for Agriculture and Regional Development Jaala Pulford will launch the strategy at Ballarat Specialist School FARM, 800 Norman Street, Invermay on Monday May 30

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NSW leave Hodkinson in a state of suspense

OF all Trent Hodkinson’s attributes, it is not his classy ball-playing, organisational ability or radar-like goalkicking that has earned him six Origin games for NSW.
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RELAXED: Knights co-captain Trent Hodkinson is putting no extra pressure on himself to push for an Origin position. Picture: Getty Images

More than anything, it has been his cool head under pressure.

And as the Newcastle co-captain and incumbent Blues halfback prepares for Saturday’s clash with Wests Tigers at Campbelltown –his last chance to state a case for retention –he could hardly appear more relaxed about the subject of Origin I, 2016.

Blues coach Laurie Daley will name his squad on Monday, and if media speculation is accurate, either South Sydney’s Adam Reynolds or the Roosters’ Mitchell Pearce will be allocated the No.7 jersey.

If that is the case, Hodkinson is not losing any sleep over it.

“It always is in the back of your mind, because at this time of year it’s everywhere,’’ Hodkinson said on Friday.

“It’s hard to avoid it.

“But being at a new club and obviously coming off a couple of poor losses, my focus is this weekend and on the Tigers.’’

If Daley intends to pick Hodkinson, he has not been forthcoming with that information.

“There hasn’t been any chat or what-notbetween me and Laurie, but I’ll try and do my talking on the field this week,’’ he said.“Whatever happens, happens.’’

Hodkinson missed last week’s 62-0 flogging by Cronulla with a knee injury but, after a week of physiotherapy, said he was able to train on Friday without inconvenience.

“I got through really well,’’ he said. “I trained earlier in the week, on Wednesday, as well and it’s pulled up really well.I’ve been back and done everything with the boys …I’ve just got to be a bit smarter and pull back a bit and get the maintenance things right.’’

Hodkinson’s return means 18-year-old Jack Cogger is likely to drop back and skipper Newcastle’s under-20s.

Giant forward Pauli Pauli is also expected to return to Newcastle’s squad, along with either David Bhana or Josh King, to cover for the likely absences of Jacob Saifiti (wrist) and Sam Mataora.

Newcastle are at a low ebb, having conceded 179 points and scored only 10 in their past four games, but will be hoping to repeat their 18-16 win against the Tigers in round five.The Knights have won three straight games against the Tigers and five of their past six.

Knights forward Jack Stockwell said his teammates were not dwelling on the loss to Cronulla.

“The head space is good,’’ Stockwell said. “We haven’t talked too much about what happened on the weekend. We just want to put it in the past.’’

Woman jailed for  stealing Australia Post van in Nowra

The stolen van came to a halt in a paddock at Dunmore.A woman accused of stealing an Australia Postdeliveryvan andleading a hair-raising police chase from Nowra to Dunmore in February has been jailed for at least 12 months.
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Keira Griffin evaded four attempts by two separate highway patrol carsto bring her to a halt before a set of road spikes and a tight left hand bend brought her unstuck.

Griffin was arrested in a paddockat Dunmorehaving spurred her stolen ride on to speeds of up to 150km/h.

Police say Griffin was irrational and drug-addled when she chanced upona panel van with keys in the ignition,on Jaycee Avenue at Nowra on the afternoon of February 10.

The driver –an Australia Post contractor –gave chase as shedrove away.

Griffin traveled to a friend’s house at Santuary Point, made an “irrational”request for aset of number plates, collided with a car parked outside and ranover a letter boxbefore decamping.

Highway Patrol officers attempted to stop the van as it travelled north on the Princes Highway at South Nowra before haltingthe pursuit due to Griffin’s erratic driving.

The pursuit was reactivated then abandoneda further three times until road spikes stopped the van for good.

Police said Griffin was “dreamy” and making requests for the drug ice when arrested.

In Wollongong court on Friday, Magistrate Geraldine Beattie said Griffin’s actions had been terribly reckless.

“It’s only because you’re still alive that you are where you are today,” she said, noting Griffin could easily have been killed if she’d been involved in an accident during the pursuits.

“You’re manner of driving was highly dangerous.”

Griffin will be eligible for parole next February.

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Ten year history of local comp

Bodyboardersare hoping the recent run of perfect surfing conditions willcontinuefor the 10thannual Knights Beach Pro in two weeks’ time.
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Dylan Beach, Aden Arens

Over the last decade the Knights Beach Pro has become a recognisedsporting eventnot just locally, but nationally, and its success is due in part to stronglocal support.

Victor Harbor’s Dylan Beach has competed in almost every Knights Pro since its inception, and this year he has taken on the role of Australian Bodyboarding Association general manager.

Dylansaid the Knights shore break is one of the most spectacular in the country, making the event a hallmarkstop on the Australian professional bodyboarding tour.

“I think the progressionfrom the very first Knights Beach Pro, when we only had 20 guys competing,to now where we’ve got the world’s best riders and about 60 competitorsis amazing,” Dylan said.

“We’ve got guys coming from Portugal, Brazil, Hawaii andall around Australia. That’s been a pretty big stepping stone in terms of the event.

“It’s been an evolutionover the last 10 years andthrough the South Australian Bodyboard Clubthe local contingency of riders is only getting stronger and it’s only getting more competitive.

“Knights is such a consistent wave in terms of quality, it’s definitely a favourite of all of the travelling riders.”

Local competitorMarshall Watson is the only South Australian to win a Knights Pro, taking it out in 2013. Riding alongside Marshall this year will be 17-year-old Port Elliot bodyboarderAden Arens.Aden said he would be “stoked” to get through a couple of heats in the professional category.

“I’m really looking forward to the event and getting to meet some of the pros,” Aden said. “There’s always a good atmosphere and just about every bodyboarder in SA will be coming down to watch it.”

Dylan said Aden will be one to watch. “His surfing has improved in leaps and bounds, and it’s only going to get better,” Dylan said.“You see him progressing and pushing himself.”

Parking impasse ‘food for thought’

WAGGA’S new “entertainement precinct” in Fitzmaurice Street has attracted two new eateries, aggravating the street’s crippling parking shortage.
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Business owners and managers have been losing tradebecause their customers have not been able to secure parks, which is set to worsen with the imminent establishmentof yet more cafes and restaurants.

Griffith restaurateur and bar owner Joe Barbarowill open anew 300-seat Italian restaurant in Kincaid Street, at the old Thirsty Crow site.

Mr Barbaro saidhe would be forced to rely on private off-street parking at the back of the premises to attract diners.

A Wagga barista is preparing toopen a new cafe on Fitzmaurice Street within months, taking the place of the formerThree Chefs bar, cafe and restaurant.

Business owners and managers of Carpet Court, The Duke of Kent Hotel, Nemo’s Fish and Chips, Smiley’s Hairdresser and Uneke Lounge have all toldThe Daily Advertiser the chronicshortage of parking spaces and restrictive time limits have hit their bottom lines and in some cases was “running us broke”.

Thirsty Crow head brewerCraig Wealands welcomed the increased Fitzmaurice Street trade, buturged council toalleviate the growing painswith better public transport.

“A decent public transport system would take the heat off the main street,” Mr Wealands said.

“People would feel more comfortable to drink, which would be good for business and thefollowing morning there wouldn’t be cars parked on the street fromthe night before.

“People travelling to licensed venues on a Saturday could leave their cars at home, instead ofleaving theircar at the pub, which requires them tomove it by 8am to avoid a fine.

“The lack ofpublic transport is our biggestdrama.”

Despite the handbrake on trade,Mr Wealands said parking paralysis was a sign Wagga was becoming a thriving metropolis.

“It’s incouncil’s best interests to work out a solution for growth,” he said.

Council will issue itsIntegrated Transport Studyin June, which mayor Rod Kendall promised would result in “decisions to give comfort to those businesses”.

Previous council parking studies in 2003 and 2008 both concluded Wagga needed a multi-storey carpark, whichWagga Business Chamber has consistently maintained is the preferred solution.

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Two rugby greats enjoy a catch up at Wellington

Wallaby greats Jon White and Ken Catchpole together in Wellington on Thursday. Photo: FARREN HOTHAMWELLINGTON was graced by the presence of two of the greats of 1960s rugby union this week.
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While at Wellington, Ken Catchpole, the man regarded by many as Australia’s greatest ever scrumhalf, and the equally revered Jon White said their wins in South Africa during the 1963 tour was one of their finest memories.

Jon White, who played most of his football at Yeoval and was elevated into the Australian side from central west and NSW Country, remembers a brutal and exciting series.

“It was an absolutely grand era,” he said.

“Those two test wins in South Africa were fantastic. The second win put us in a position to win the series at Ellis Park down below the mountains at Bloemfontein.

“It was an extreme altitude and not many have done it since.”

Catchpole captained Australia 13 times and with Phil Hawthorne at flyhalf helped revive Australian rugby when it had gone through tough times.

“It is wonderful to catch up with Jon again, great times,” he said

Illness has stopped the Hall of Fame legend in the sport from going out much these days but Catchpole still keeps a close eye on his beloved Wallabies

“I watch on television, I go to one match or two a year,” he stated.

White stayed with rugby as a selector and cherishes his bush experience and still lives in the Wellington/Yeoval area now.

Australian Rugby Union, he said, has blessed with bush stars such as Cumnock’s Tim Gavin, Dubbo’s Beau Robinson and Bathurst’s Marty Roebuck as well as many more.

But despite that he is concerned the rugby nursery in the country doesn’t have the same opportunity as it did when he was running around.

“There isn’t any pathway anymore,” he said.

“We played for Central West, then NSW Country against City and then NSW. So there was a pathway.

“You’ve got to play in Sydney for you to get noticed, nobody gets looked at it in the country.”

White, who played 25 times for the Wallabies in the second and front rows, also believes the game needs to open up more.

“It’s a defensive game, the defence is spot on but I think they should stand back and make the game from free running,” he said, before adding the duo were in agreement that while the amateur days and players are now a bygone era, rugby hasn’t changed that much.

“If you don’t have a front row you struggle and things to make good football then are the same now, the ability to gather the highball, these never change,” White added.

The pair also shared a laugh when discussing something else they agreed on – forwards finding themselves in the backline usually leads to things going awfully wrong.

“I tear my hair out when I see a fat forward out there stuffing up a good backline movement,” White said.

“They lumber in the backline and muck it up.”

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TAFE students brighten up Dubbo hospital

TAFE Western students put up their works in the clinical services building of Dubbo Hospital. They are (from left) Monique Harmer, Judi Unger and Merv Bishop with Base Art Inc member Brigid Palin. Photo: BELINDA SOOLETHE Arts in Health program at Dubbo Hospital is broadening the skills of TAFE Western students in the city.
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A partnership between TAFE Western Creative Industries and the hospital has allowed the students to display their work in a designated area within its new clinical services building.

New works went up earlier this month for the benefit of hospital patients, their carers and staff.

Head teacher of TAFE Western Creative Industries Vicki Vance said the partnership had given students experience and knowledge of arts in a health context as part of the Arts in Health program at the hospital.

“Students also gain experience in curatorial practice, installation and the de-installation of art exhibitions through this unique exposure opportunity,” she said.

The Arts in Health program was established as part of the $91.3 million stage one and two redevelopment of Dubbo Hospital with the help of a voluntary committee called Base Art Inc.

The program will extend into stages three and four redevelopment, currently in the planning phase.

Base Art Inc president Melanie Moeller said the TAFE Western exhibition space at Dubbo Hospital encouraged strong community engagement.

“We are incredibly proud and pleased to see a dedicated space in Dubbo Hospital for art produced by local TAFE Western Creative Industries students,” she said.

“The designated TAFE exhibition area in the entry foyer and day surgery waiting rooms of the new clinical services building provides a real connection to the community.”

Dubbo Hospital general manager Debbie Bickerton said the Arts in Health program aimed to improve the hospital environment and experience for patients, carers and staff.

“Arts in our new clinical services building is a real highlight for us because the art brightens the hospital environment, giving patients much-needed distraction when ill,” she said.

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Flags raised for a Fresh Start

Official: Claire McGuire, who gave the welcome to country, hoists the Aboriginal flag as Fresh Start chief executive Jeff Claughton looks on. Mr Claughton raised the Australian flag earlier as a reminder for people to be good citizens.
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FRESH Start Recovery Program’snew facility, The Hill, was officially opened last Friday afternoon beforea large gathering of politicians and community members.

Fresh Start chief executive Jeff Claughton said the transaction for the Spencers Brook Roadproperty went through in December last year.

“Since then we have had an army of volunteers turning this facilityinto what yousee today,” he said.

The three storeyold nurses’ quarters in the middle oftown isstill in their possession, and it will continue to be used for an introductory phase of treatment.

“As people go through thatphase of getting their head clear, they will then graduate out to The Hill after about 10 weeks,” he said.

Across the two facilities there are 135 beds at Fresh Start’sdisposal which will prove to be beneficial.

“This facility is our response to the scourge of methylamphetamine,” he said.

“We haven’t acquired thispropertybecause we are building an empire –we now have ample accommodation for staff and clients.”

The buildings were constructed during the second World War.

Later, the buildings weresold and turned into a holiday camp, and weresubsequently sold to a Christian group.

“We were blessed to purchase this property from them,” he said.

Fresh Start manager Darrylin Brain said the story for her was about recovery.

“I can look around and see the faces of so many men that have done amazingly well, some past residents that have changed their lives and then others here that are still part of the rehab,” she said.

“Saying thank you is really difficult because every one of the men that have been here have put in an amazing amount of work, working tirelessly, both coming out of the hospital, into Northam, getting all that ready and then coming in to The Hill and preparing this place.

“It’s been incredible for them.”

At the end of proceedings the Australian and Aboriginal flags were raised as a reminder to be good citizens.

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Orange medical professionals request review in hospital dispute

MEDICOS CONCERNS: Orange clinicians (back) Paul Bloomfield, Martyn Patfield, Tony Kirkwood, Peter Holmes, Ivan Srzich, Tristan Duncan and John Kerdic and (front) Ming Chan, Sharon Brennan, Fran Gearon, Ron Vaughan, Ruth Arnold and Peter Bryan who are concerned at the lack of transparency and procedural fairness at Orange hospital in relation to the Cardiology Department at the hospital. Photo: PHIL BLATCH 0520pbdoctors5ORANGE’S medical professionals are rallying behind the Cardiology Department at Orange hospital, which is in dispute with hospital management and the Western Local Health District (WLHD).
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It is claiming a failure on behalf of management to follow protocols and procedural fairness in dealing with complaints from staff from the department.

Cardiologist Dr Ruth Arnold said she is calling on NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner to conduct a full investigation into the way management of Orange Health Service (OHS) and the WLHD has handled the complaints of senior cardiology and nursing staff, and a subsequent review carried out by the hospital.

Dr Arnold said she fears for the viability of the Cardiology Department in the current situation.

The conflict began late last year according to Dr Arnold, when the hospital threatened to stand down one of the team of cardiologists resulting in complaints by cardiologists and senior nurses. She claims department staff were then singled out by hospital management.

Orange’s Medical Staff Council (MSC) became involved in the conflict, passing resolutions at a recent extraordinary meeting supporting the cardiologists in their complaint and calling for an independent review free of any conflict of interest by OHS and WLHD.

Member for Orange Andrew Gee is supporting the doctors by writing to NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner and chief executive officer of the WLHD Scott McLachlan earlier this week, asking for a clarification of the doctors’ concerns saying he wants their claims investigated as a matter of urgency.

Mr Gee told Ms Skinner and Mr McLachlan he was concerned Orange doctors felt they had to take the action they have and said it highlighted the high degree of concern medical professionals within the OHS have regarding the manner in which the issue surrounding one of the cardiologists was handled.

WLHD Medical Services director Clayton Spencer said the WLHD and OHS are communicating with all parties involved as appropriate including responding directly to the MSC about their concerns.

“Patient safety remains the priority throughout this process and is at the forefront of any decisions made,” he said.

“Due to the confidential nature of our discussions, we cannot make further comment at this stage.”

The MSC has about 50 clinicians across a variety of medical disciplines in Orange.

“Orange’s medical professionals are very appreciative of the support shown to us by Mr Gee,” Dr Arnold said.

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Ness honoured by Jersey breed

JERSEY breed stalwart Peter Ness has been honoured with life membership of Jersey Australia.
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TIME RECOGNISED: Peter and Wendy Ness, Nyowee, Mount Compass, at the Jersey Australia national conference dinner where Mr Ness was honoured with life membership.

Mr Ness, who farms at Nyowee, Mount Compass, with wife Wendy, is also the president of Jersey Australia.

He was surprised with announcement at the Jersey Australia national conference, held this year in the Barossa Valley.

Jersey Australia board member Trevor Saunders said the membership was “not something we give lightly”.

He said honourees typically demonstrated years of work for the breed and, while putting in those years, display an integrity.

“(Mr Ness) has played a major role in building the structure of Jersey Australia and helped significantly in its gaining acceptance,” he said.

Mr Saunders said it can be difficult for farmers to find the time to make a significant contribution but Mr Ness, with the support of his wife, was heavily involved in the shaping the governance of the organisation, as well as being involved in classification of animals.

He has also served as the vice president on the Oceania region of the World Jersey Cattle Bureau.

Mr Ness was visibly shocked by the announcement.

“It’s been a privilege to be able to help the Jersey breed,” he said.

“It was great to be there and be part of the group setting Jersey Australia up.”

He noted the influence of the Mount Compass Jersey Cattle Club, which recently celebrated 50 years.

“There were a lot of state members on the cattle club thatmentored me along,” he said.

“It’s been a great journey, I’ve met a lot of really nice people and seen some great cows, not only here but overseas.”

On the same night the Ness family was also awarded with a gold membership award, for using services of the organisation, and a silver production award.

Nyowee milks 169 cows, produces 5767 litres of milk with 269 kilograms of fat and 210kg of protein.

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